Real Salt Lake Goalkeeper David Ochoa Remains Mysteriously Absent

Jun 16, 2022, 1:25 PM
Photo courtesy: Real Salt Lake...
Photo courtesy: Real Salt Lake

SALT LAKE CITY – What a strange season it has been for Real Salt Lake to date. They find themselves near the top of the conference but have played the majority of the opening 15 games without their captain and on the road more often than not.

David Ochoa is not the main man in between the sticks, either. Who would have thought? After years of fans pleading with the coaching staff to play Ochoa as a first-team member, Ochoa was granted that chance last year and starred at just 20 years old. But as is so often the case in professional sports, when a player gets injured there is no guarantee that the position will still be available upon that player’s return.

MacMath Capitalizes

In the final preseason game against Portland, Ochoa left the pitch with an injury. Enter Zac MacMath.

“I was entering this season with the mindset of being the backup but when David [Ochoa] went down in that final preseason game my mentality shifted and I quickly turned to making the most out of the opportunity,” MacMath told reporters weeks ago.

MacMath has been a revelation for Real Salt Lake in 2022. But sadly, his heroics are not headlining the minds of the Real Salt Lake faithful. The unknown absence of Ochoa remains far too concerning.

MacMath has been a wonderful player for Real Salt Lake regardless of his role with the club. As a starter, he has performed admirably, and as a backup, he has given his all to push for starting minutes while encouraging his teammates to improve on the daily. MacMath has showcased the mental fortitude capable of handling all roles within the professional sporting space. For that, he has earned every second in between the sticks.

Ochoa’s Absence

Manager Pablo Mastroeni has been careful with his choice of words whenever asked about Ochoa but has hinted at potential reasons for the Mexican international’s absence.

Ochoa is training and playing with the Real Monarchs, and has most recently been with the Mexican National Team for Nations League fixtures, he is no longer injured. Ochoa is healthy and able to help Real Salt Lake win. So why is he not even making the bench on gamedays?

The answer is yet to be made public. The club, nor Ochoa have made any statement regarding what is going on behind closed doors. But some have speculated that Ochoa does not have the desire to push for the starting goalkeeper spot and is not willing to work hard to try and regain his post.

The only minutes seen by Ochoa in 2022 came when he started and played the entire game against Northern Colorado Hailstorm in the third round of the U.S. Open Cup that saw Real Salt Lake upset 1-0. Ochoa was not responsible for the concession during that game, but when he needed to make a save, he came up short.

With Ochoa’s contract set to expire at the end of the season, it seems somewhat likely that Ochoa is going to leave the club at the end of the year. If he does, he will leave on a free and all of the work put in by the club to develop Ochoa will not be rewarded, sadly. Reports have also surfaced that multiple clubs in Europe and Mexico are interested in the services of Ochoa.

At some point, the club or Ochoa will have to answer some questions. Ochoa is too talented to be sidelined while healthy, the truth inevitably will be told and the fanbase will be able to judge for themselves where it all went wrong.

But for now, the fanbase must hold their collective breath as they continue to wait for news regarding their beloved goalkeeper.

Next Match

Real Salt Lake will return to the pitch on June 18 when they host San Jose Earthquakes at Rio Tinto Stadium.

As always, the match will be available to stream for free via the KSL Sports and KSL 5 TV apps or on KSL Sports dot com.

  • Real Salt Lake Scoreboard

  • Real Salt Lake Team Leaders

  • Real Salt Lake Standings

Real Salt Lake

Tom Hackett

Real Salt Lake’s Latest Humiliation Leaves Fanbase Pondering

Real Salt Lake was humiliated by the MLS newcomers St. Louis City SC who remain the only undefeated club in the league. 
19 hours ago
real salt lake st. louis city sc...
Chandler Holt

Real Salt Lake Falls To Red Hot St. Louis After Second Half Run

Real Salt Lake fell to undefeated St. Louis City at home by a score of 4-0 in the first ever match between the clubs.
2 days ago
Pablo Mastroeni - Real Salt Lake...
Tom Hackett

Desperate Real Salt Lake Hope To Dethrone St. Louis City SC

Real Salt Lake remains in Utah this weekend as they prepare to host undefeated MLS newcomers St. Louis City SC at America First Field.
3 days ago
Chandler Holt

RSL Head Coach Pablo Mastroeni Says Team Has That Dog In Them

Real Salt Lake Head Coach Pablo Mastroeni joined KSL Sports Zone to talk about the upcoming match against St. Louis and the early bye week.
3 days ago
KSL Sports

Real Salt Lake Adds Draft Pick Emeka Eneli To First-Team Roster

Real Salt Lake announced the signing of defensive midfielder Emeka Eneli.
3 days ago
Richard Ledezma during soccer match...
KSL Sports

RSL Loans Richard Ledezma To New York City FC

Real Salt Lake announced they are loaning 2023 MLS rights to Richard Ledezma to New York City FC. 
3 days ago

Sponsored Articles

High angle view of the beautiful Rose Bowl Stadium...
KSL Digital Sales

How to Prepare for the 2023 Rose Bowl

Everything you need to know to plan your 2023 Rose Bowl trip in Pasadena, California. This year, the Utes will face Penn State.
KSL Digital Sales

Notable Moments From The Utah Jazz Season… So Far

At the beginning of the season, the Utah Jazz were second to last. Now they rank in the top 10 teams in the Western Conference.
Football soccer ball on grass field on stadium...
KSL Digital Sales

Everything You Need to Know to Watch the 2022 World Cup

Find out where and when to watch the upcoming games and final match for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, including where to find live updates.
ksl sports logos...
KSL Sports

KSL Sports Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Sign up today for the KSL Sports newsletter. Get the latest Utah sports news delivered to your inbox.
KSL Sports

Win Tickets Wednesday: Jimmy Buffett

Get your Hawaiian shirts ready.
Iron Maiden tour...
KSL Sports

Win Tickets Wednesday: Iron Maiden

Iron Maiden returns to Utah in 2022 with The Legacy of the Beast tour.
Real Salt Lake Goalkeeper David Ochoa Remains Mysteriously Absent